Thursday, October 4, 2012

Black Bean Tomato Kale Quinoa

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As crazy as it sounds, I never had quinoa (KEEN-wah, not qui-noa) until this summer. I only heard about it the last couple years, somehow this ancient grain made its comeback and became one of the "superfoods". Quinoa is not only a great whole grain (fiber!) alternative to the common ones like brown rice and barley, but also good source of protein. However, the price of quinoa is insane than its counterparts. I got a pound of quinoa in one box for $5. I do love the texture of and mouth feel of quinoa.

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Today is the last day of my week long rotation WI. I have learned more than I needed to know about the colors of babies' poop, how to transition from breast milk to whole milk, introducing infants new foods, and lots more about babies. I saw too many bare breasts during breast feeding sessions, and I now know the difference between colostrum and milk. Maybe one day all this information will make sense to me. Community nutrition offers such a variety. It's not just about nutrition, but also lots of social- and environmental-related issues. Regardless, I loved every part of this rotation. This definitely gave me more insight on what I want to do as a dietitian.

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The chili powder and green chiles gives this dish a bit of heat, but the kale gives the dish a more "earthy" feel. At least it was how I felt when I had it, I could never figure out how the judges on Top Chef come up with all the descriptive words for one dish. Note for this recipe, look for prewashed quinoa. I made the mistake of trying to wash these teeny tiny grains, needless to say, I probably wasted a good amount of it.

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Simmer, simmer, simmer...

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 Black Bean Tomato Kale Quinoa

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium sweet onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup quinoa (uncooked), rinsed or prewashed
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (more or less to taste)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 3/4 cup vegetable broth, low sodium
1 (4.5 ounce) can diced green chilis
2 medium tomato, diced or 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 cup kale, torn into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup freshly chopped cilantro
Kosher or sea salt to taste

 1. In a large skillet add olive oil, turn to medium-low heat and saute diced onions until tender, about 4 minutes, add garlic and saute one additional minute. 
2. Add the remaining ingredients in the order listed above until tomatoes. Cover, bring to a boil, reduce heat to a low boil and cook 15-20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. 
3. Add in kale the last 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to sit 5 minutes covered before serving. Fluff quinoa with a large spoon and serve with cilantro.

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